Andrew Goodman Social Reformer (1943-1964)
Known as "Andy" Goodman grew up on the upper East Side of New York City with his parents and his two brothers. Goodman attended the Walden School. As a teen, he became involved for the fight for racial Equality. He then participated in the Youth March for the integrated schools in 1958 in Washington D.C also a 1960 protest at New York Woolworth's.
In 1962, Goodman registered into Queens College. There he did theater, soon after he was in a college production of Faust. As time went on however, he became more intrigued in social and political activism. Goodman participated in 1963 March on Washington. Soon after in 1964 he took part and protested at the World's Fair which was now far from his college campus. Goodman applied for a special summer program in Mississippi in the spring of 1964. The initiative was bringing hundreds of volunteers to the state to help the African Americans be able to register, have a chance to vote, and have educational opportunities. He was selected for this special summer program and traveled to Ohio in June as a volunteer trainee. While there he met Micheal Scherener and James Chaney, they both worked for Congress of Racial Equality ( CORE) Chaney and Schwerner had to leave the event because of an attack on a church in Mississippi which agreed to work with CORE, to investigate Goodman decided to go with them.
Goodman wrote a card home to his parents from Meridian, Mississippi. He described Mississippi's town he was currently in as " a wonderful town" and " our reception was very good" in the local community. This postcard however, would be the last one he would ever write home. Chaney, Goodman, and Schwerner were pulled over later for allegedly speeding in Neshoba County on June 21, 1964. All three were held in the local jail until late that night. This was the last time they were seen getting into their car and driving away.
When the Three Disappeared
All three soon after went missing and this made headlines. Attention centered on the fact that Goodman and Schwerner were white but also had just disappeared. Chaney was hardly noticed in all the talk because he was not white. The local authorities, whom were segregationists and disagreed with CORE's idea's went in search of the two men. The President of Neshoba County brought the FBI to investigate the disappearance of these three men. Two days after the three went missing their vehicle was discovered burned with no trace of the three men. On that August all three bodies were found fatally shot the local law enforcement who were vaguely involved in this case, the federal government filed charges of " civil rights violations" and most involved were found. However only seven of the eighteen were convicted. The FBI investigation and the legal proceeding and shined light on the so called "conspiracy" of Chaney, Goodman, and Schwerner. The Neshoba Country law enforcement tipped off the KKK regarding Chaney, Schwerner, and Goodman after the law enforcement told the KKK they later followed the three on a local highway and killed them. Soon after they were hidden so they wouldn't be found and so the police would not accuse the KKK of this bu they were wrong.
Based on Chaney, Goodman, and Schwerner's story
The 1988 film "Mississippi Burning" as based on this true story. A local reporter Jerry Mitchell soon uncovered new evidence in the murder cases leading to the first prosecution for the three murders. Edger Ray Killen in 2005 was found guilty of "manslaughter" and only sentenced to 60 years in prison. Killen was said to be the mastermind behind the murders. Unfortunately he had acquitted in the original civil rights case against him because one of the jurors refused to convict a minister.
Goodman was or still is an inspiration to social and political activists. Posthumously he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom from Barack Obama in 2014.
Andrew Goodman Foundation run by his brother David.
Goodman's legacy still lives on through the Andrew Goodman Foundation which is run by his brother David. The mission for the foundation now is to empower " the next generation to initiative and sustain creative and effective social action" also " enable leaders and their communities to flourish by operating and investing in programs that advance civic engagement and intergenerational coalitions." His brother plains to go through with is brothers legacy and prove that his brother won't die in vain. Thanks!